TWO houses will be built in a flood zone area despite residents’ objections and officers recommending further surveys be undertaken.
Chichester District Council’s planning committee agreed to permit the build in Orchard Street, Chichester, during its meeting last Wednesday despite several neighbours attending the meeting to object.
The development will involve the demolition of a garage and the build of two semi-detached family homes with flood prevention measures to allay the risk from it being sited in a Environment Agency rated flood zone 2 area.
Objectors raised concerns including the issue of ‘garden grabbing’ and the ‘over development’ of the small area.
Clare Apel, CDC councillor for Chichester West, said: “There might be enough land for the possibility of one dwelling but two would be too much and would have a negative impact on this area.”
Last year the council refused the application because the applicant did not provide a ‘sequential test’ to prove they had looked at other sites in the area, not in flood zones, in which to do the build.
Since then the applicant has conducted a sequential test but the planning officer said it was not adequate because it had only tested sites around the city, as opposed to the entire district.
However councillors voted that it was adequate, in this case, because flood prevention measures had been planned, they had never known the area to flood and there was a need for housing.
Cllr Quentin Cox said: “I find the guidance to be a little bit eccentric. It’s almost against human rights to sa a person with a site here can’t do anything with it until he’s looked at every other site in the district.”